This is precisely the problem that Matthew Hagy and I have been studying over the past couple of years. Our pool balls are actually colloidal particles of a couple hundred nanometers in diameter. The paint corresponds to the charges encoded on the surface of the colloids. Opposite charges attract. Initially we studied Janus particles that literally have two faces, one hemisphere is positively charged and the other negative. (If interested, you can also check out my earlier blog post on the dynamics of Janus particles.) In the work that was just published in the Journal of Chemical Physics, we now consider the case in which the spheres are coated in stripes of alternating charge. This generalizes the surface pattern of the Janus particles to three, four, five, six, and more stripes. The funny thing is that very little happens to the packing of the particles because that property is so strongly dominated by the shape of the particles. But their motion, and the timescales in which they relax from a given deformation is highly sensitive to the number of stripes and perhaps also to how they are striped. In a sense, this says that if you want to maintain their behavior, you can fatten them up a little but you can't change their stripes.
The title of the article is "Dynamical simulation of electrostatic striped colloidal particles," and the work was funded by the NSF. It was released recently at J. Chem. Phys. 140, 034701 (2014), and featured on the cover! Click on http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4859855 to access the article.